NASA Space Universe

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NASA Space Universe
NSUJohn, Kevin, K-Ray, Paul.jpg
NSU left to right: John, Kevin, K-Ray, Paul
Background information
Origin Santa Ana, California, California United States
Genres Punk rock, hardcore punk, noise rock, experimental rock
Years active 2006–present
Labels Shogun Records,[1][2][3] Gradual Limbo Records,[4] Funky Brewski
Associated acts Zoophilia, Ex Oblivione
Members John Cardwell, Kevin Hermes, Paul Kubacek, Kevin Rhea

NASA Space Universe (or NSU) are an American punk rock band from Santa Ana, California who originally formed in 2006.[5]


Early Years 2006-2007[edit]

After the Collapse of controversial, experimental Santa Ana Art Synthpunk band Zoophilia, Kevin Hermes (Drums), and Kevin Rhea (Vocals) joined with John Cardwell (Guitar), whom they had worked with prior in the SCHS(Santa Claus Hypnosis Show). NSU starting as a Pyramid Scheme system,[6] Punk crime group, and Socio-political project. After a group viewing of Videodrome and all having a connection that particular viewing, they then later played to what videodrome had influenced them to play that particular night.[6] Soon after the Socio-political project was transformed to the current Punk Rock incarnation of NASA Space Universe . In the summer of 2006 they met Paul Kubasek of Noise Rock band Ex Oblivione during a Zoophilia show at The Smell [7] Two months later they became a quartet and started playing shows in the Southern California Area.

Early Years 2008-2010[edit]

After continuous touring, their first release was a self titled extended play on Gradual Limbo Records. NSU started to play more notable shows including the Smell's 10th anniversary,[8] and a concert on a boat.[9] This followed with a tour of the Pacific Northwest with Okie Dokie a Cal Arts band featuring a then student Mikal Cronin. For much of the year NSU played numerous shows for Sean Carnage Mondays, Don Bolles' Club Ding-a-ling, as well as numerous warehouses, generator shows, and fringe venues. Despite the Reverb heavy punk movement of the Los Angeles scene NSU, had continued their abstract punk sound and played with many bands such as xbxrx, White Lung, Shearing Pinx, Mika Miko, White Flag, The Urinals, and Saccharine Trust.[10] NSU had also been played on several punk and independent radios as Nardwuar's WFMU show,[11] Razorcake,[12]Maximumrockandroll,[13] and KXLU's Demolisten,[14] as well as performing live on air.[15] The Release and constant touring eventually caught the attention of many critics and fans including Kyle H. Mabson,[16] V. Vale,[17] and White Flag. The Second EP Brainrailers would then be recorded by Vic Alfaro of Christian Death Fame,[18] and released by French label Shogun Records in April 2010.[19]


Shortly after the release of Brainrailers, NSU quickly went to recording work for their debut full length release Across the Wounded Galaxies to be released on Shogun Records. A Nationwide Tour of California to New Orleans, Louisiana was had for the release. By 2012 Through playing numerous shows, and with constant touring including another Winter Pacific Northwest Tour, NSU's whole catalog had sold out, and American represses were announced.

Their debut album received positive reviews internationally, with United Kingdom paper The Quietus recommending the band, with the comment that "Musically, their high-pitched wall-of-jangle/atonal solo approach has earned them plenty of Die Kreuzen comparisons, which have merit, but I’m equally reminded of the collective mentality of those mid-Eighties Ron Johnson Records bands, only with a hardcore upbringing."[20]

In June 2012, NSU along with Manager embarked on a second Nationwide Tour in support of the Ice EP, Treated Versions of Various songs in Various Speeds, and the Tour Documentary "Van Warped Tour Death Drive", Directed by Longtime NSU associate Vincent Catanho.[21] With both items selling out prior to tours end, NSU had successfully completed the Bi-Coastal tour.

Musical and lyrical style[edit]

Drawing from Science-Fiction, Philip K. Dick, Cosmicism, after death preservation, and H.P. Lovecraft [6] K- Rhea's lyrical delivery is often carried with a Jerry Falwell delivery, and has been described as "speaking in tongues".[6] Musically influenced by Japanese hardcore, SST, Funk, Noise music, and containing syncopated drum beats, Cowpunk and Free Jazz guitar licks, along with a constant start stop song aesthetic.

Live Setting and Performances[edit]

NSU live at Pehrspace July 9, 2010.

NASA Space Universe's unusual performance style drew comment from UK paper The Guardian, who remarked on the "chaotic shows in unusual locations and unusual clothes" in calling out the band to exemplify a wave of "interesting, uncompromising and just plain bonkers" punk bands.[22] The latter praising NSU's credibility compared to other contemporary bands.

Coming from a DIY punk ethic, NSU rarely use a stage, even when one is provided. Constant audience participation has been a part of the NSU live show, which can include group reciting of curses,[23] sacrificial consumption, desecration of objects, handing out texts, and various topic based actions. Copious amounts of receipt tape and books have also been a part of the NSU aesthetic, often at times with the whole audience being covered in receipt tape, and the floor unseen.

As of 2011 Video Projections have been an ever present force via a Self rigged projector. The subject usually containing various film collages nearly untraceable in obscurity.

Apart from playing generator shows,[17] art galleries, and overpasses, they have also played on a boat on the Long Beach coast,[9] along with many often regarded unconventional settings.

At The Smell, a wall of aluminum foil was created, in which the back of the wall would be shined on by full stage lights. The options would be either to stay behind the wall and face a twelve foot glare, or view the band who were positioned in a configuration facing the stage. as a result, those who wanted to avoid slamming would stand on the stage while all others would be on the floor level with the band.


  • Kevin Rhea, Vocals (2006–present)
  • John Cardwell, guitar (2006–present)
  • Kevin Hermes drums, percussion (2006–present)
  • Paul Kubasek bass, backing vocals (2007–present)





  1. ^ Albums by NASA Space Universe: Discography, songs, biography, and listening guide - Rate Your Music
  2. ^ Label: Shogun Records - Rate Your Music
  3. ^ Shogun Records (2) - CDs and Vinyl at Discogs
  4. ^ Gradual Limbo Records - CDs and Vinyl at Discogs
  5. ^ NASA space universe | Listen and Stream Free Music, Albums, New Releases, Photos, Videos
  6. ^ a b c d Rex Reason (2007-10-18). "Aural Reports - Page 1 - Music - Orange County". OC Weekly. Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  7. ^ Carnage, Sean. "Interstellar overdrive: NASA Space Universe in words + sounds". Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  8. ^ "SMELL 10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY BEGINS TONITE!!!". Retrieved 2007-12-27. 
  9. ^ a b NASA SPACE UNIVERSE - boat show1 - YouTube
  10. ^ NASA Space Universe’s Biography – Free listening, videos, concerts, stats and pictures at
  11. ^ name="Nardwuar">
  12. ^ name="Razorcake RADIO">
  13. ^ name="MRR RADIO">
  14. ^ name="KXLU Demolisten">
  15. ^ name="KXLU LIVE">
  16. ^ "Reverse Retro » Blog Archive » Kyle H. Mabson ((((((Interview Journey Part No. 2))))))". 2008-10-15. Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  17. ^ a b "Pranks, Punk and Industrial Culture from V. Vale | 2010 | January | 9". Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  18. ^ "NASA Space Universe-Brainrailers". 
  19. ^ "BRAIN RAILER van NASA space universe op Myspace". Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  20. ^ The Quietus | Features | Noel's Straight Hedge | 2011 In Punk & Hardcore: A Review
  21. ^
  22. ^ Tim Jonze On Shuffle … Punk | Music | The Guardian
  23. ^ NASA Space Universe: The Why of Necrophilia | A Little Necrophilia
  24. ^ NASA Space Universe - Across The Wounded Galaxies (Vinyl, LP) at Discogs
  25. ^ NSU* - NSU (Vinyl) at Discogs
  26. ^ NASA Space Universe - Brainrailers (Vinyl) at Discogs
  27. ^ NASA Space Universe - ICE E.P. (Vinyl) at Discogs

External links[edit]